Call it the LG G7, call it “Judy” as rumors suggest, heck call it Ishmael. LG’s next phone is coming — but what will it look like?
LG pulled out all the stops to deliver one of 2017’s best smartphones in the G6. With its breakthrough design, massive display for its size, excellent wide-angle camera, and dependable performance, it was a return to form for the company that had something of a misstep with 2016’s G5. Almost as soon as the LG G6 hit the market in March 2017, rumors began to swirl about the company’s next top-of-the-line handset. Here’s everything we think we know about the LG G7 — or whatever the phone ends up being called.
Release date and availability
While there’s a little mystery regarding the launch of most smartphones, LG has pushed the suspense to the next level. While we originally had our hopes set on an early announcement at CES in January, that didn’t happen. We’re also not planning to see the G7 at Mobile World Congress in February either. Cy Kim, managing director of LG Electronics South Africa, told journalists in January that the launch would be “a little late.”
Now, a new report from VentureBeat suggests the phone, which is code-named “Judy,” will finally end up being launched in June. According to the report, the phone won’t be called the G7, but rather will kick-start a new lineup of flagship phones from LG.
This corroborates a previous report from The Investor which noted that LG Electronics vice chairman and CEO Jo Seong-jin ordered that the LG G7 be shelved and a new flagship be started from scratch. A company spokesperson told Engadget the news was “inaccurate,” and that the release date “is currently under consideration and will be announced when the time is right.”
LG’s top brass may be wary of launching the G7 so close to the Samsung Galaxy S9, which is set to be unveiled at MWC on February 25. This delay could see the phone pushed back to allow LG to come up with a unique selling point that the G7 is apparently lacking.
While we’ve listed the phone as the “LG G7,” earlier rumors from The Investor said that’s unlikely to be the name of the successor to the LG G6. LG was reportedly looking into retiring the “G” part of the name in favor of a double-digit name that would bring the LG phone parallel with the higher numbers on the iPhone X and upcoming Galaxy S9. It’s clear LG is worried the name “G7” might be perceived as less powerful than a competing phone with a higher number.
But LG threw a wrench into those particular rumors with a now-hidden page on its U.K. website. Initially spotted by Techradar, the now-deleted part of the website listed “Future LG G7” as being compatible with QuickCharge 4.0. Clearly, this wasn’t meant to be made public as the link is now dead. An LG spokesperson said in a statement to PocketNow that device names are never set in stone before a product launch, in response to the apparent gaffe.
Android Police also noticed an app listing for LG Pay mentioned the LG G7, adding more fuel to that particular fire. That listing has now been removed.
The report from VentureBeat has shed some light on what we should expect from the phone under the hood. The phone will reportedly boast a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor, along with dual rear-facing camera, water resistance, and stereo speakers.
That corroborates previous reports. LG worked with Qualcomm on the chipmaker’s current Snapdragon 845 processor, industry sources told South Korea’s Aju Business Daily. According to the report, the two companies started working together in May 2017.
While LG decided to settle for the outdated 821 processor in the G6 to accelerate the process of bringing its product to market, competing devices, like the Samsung Galaxy S8, launched sporting the more powerful 835. In working alongside Qualcomm now, the phone maker looks to avoid a similar situation when it launches the G7. According to Aju Business Daily, LG is planning on fitting the G7 with an 845, which will also be found inside the Galaxy S9.
The Snapdragon 845 processor will provide a “25 percent performance uplift” over last year’s Snapdragon 835. The chip features an X20 LTE modem, which will offer provide gigabit connectivity on supported networks.
Meanwhile, a report from The Investor earlier in May claimed that the G7 will receive an OLED display, like Samsung’s Galaxy S8 and the iPhone X. though fresh reports now indicate that may not be true. Instead, the company may adopt a new type of display, called an MLCD+. This display is reportedly capable of a high brightness while saving on battery life. The new industry trend has shifted toward OLED technology, which offers improved contrast, power efficiency, and thinner screens compared to LCD. Moving to an OLED panel would also make the G7 compatible with Google’s Daydream VR — a feature the G6 missed out on. We’ll have to see if using an MLCD+ display affects the new phone’s Daydream-readiness.
That’s all the information we have on the LG G7 at the moment, but we’ll continue to update this article over the coming months as we hear more.
Updated on February 16: A new report from VentrueBeat says the phone won’t be launched until June, and gives some insight into the specs we can expect.
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